It’s no surprise that many potential bird owners want a bird that is friendly, gentle, and well-suited to being a companion pet. These traits are even more important for anyone with little or no experience caring for pet birds. It’s easier to bond with and care for an animal that has a natural disposition for being friendly and affectionate than one that is frightful and aggressive. Every bird has a unique personality, individual birds can be nippy or difficult to tame, regardless of their species. While all pet birds have the capability to bite and cause a ruckus, certain species tend to be more friendly and gentle than others. When properly tamed and cared for, these birds often are affectionate with their caretakers and lack a propensity for biting. Some are fairly active while others maintain a more relaxed disposition.
1. Pionus Parrot.
Beautiful and soft-spoken, pionus parrots have gained a reputation for being some of the most gentle pet birds. While they are highly intelligent and thrive in social settings, they tend to be more independent than some other species. This typically makes them a little less moody than parrot species that demand attention. Pionus parrots are very active birds and will readily burn off energy with bird-safe toys.
Doves are seen as symbols of peace and love around the world, so it should come as no surprise that doves are among the most gentle bird species. Indeed, these quiet, sweet-tempered birds make excellent pets and are even a good choice for apartment living. They tolerate handling well but don't demand attention from their caretakers.
Cockatiels long have been popular pet birds for their affectionate, gentle demeanor. These birds are playful and active, and they love to whistle and mimic household sounds. Although a cockatiel that hasn’t been properly tamed might be nippy, the species generally is very friendly around people and tolerant of being held.
4. Bourke Parakeets.
Native to Australia, Bourke’s parakeets tend to be gentle, good-natured pet birds, especially when they are hand-fed as babies. They’re usually most active and chatty around dawn and dusk, and they remain fairly mellow for the rest of the day. Although they are social birds, they typically won’t be demanding of your attention.
The eclectus is a large parrot species that's known to be an affectionate bird. These birds thrive on socialization with their caretakers and might become jealous if they feel they’re being ignored. Some people say a male eclectus is more affable while a female eclectus might become nippy, especially if she’s nesting. But the female birds also tend to handle stress better, which can make them less likely to lash out.
With finches, it's their caretakers who must be gentle, as they are rather fragile little birds. In most cases, finches do better as hands-off pets. So if holding a bird is not important to you, consider getting a small finch flock of your own. Provide finches with as large of an enclosure as possible, so they can get their exercise, and enjoy their pleasant chirps and peeps throughout the day.
7. Hyacinth Macaw.
Although it is the largest of the macaws, the hyacinth macaw's sweet and even personality has earned it the "gentle giant" moniker. These birds have large, somewhat intimidating beaks that are capable of cracking coconut shells. But properly raised hyacinth macaws don't tend to bite as often or as readily as many other parrot species.
Budgies (or parakeets) are another great choice for those who prefer a gentle feathered friend. While they might bite when they're upset, their tiny beaks are hardly capable of doing much damage. And with proper training and handling, budgie bites can become quite a rare occurrence. These social birds love to spend time with their caretakers and delight in play with toys or even learning to talk.